Exchange rates have a far reaching impact on international trade and businesses. They can directly or indirectly affect the success or failure of a company, and play a key role for importers, exporters, tourist industry, manufacturing sector, and so on.
With the established importance of exchange rates, it is important to have an efficient and reliable server that can provide accurate and fast information on various exchange rates. It can take a bit of time and effort to compare the services of various platforms in this regard. To make things easy for you, we have compiled a list of options made available by two competing platforms, i.e., currencylayer.com and openexchangerates.org. In this blog we’ll compare and contrast various features provided by the two platforms.
What Kind of Exchange Rate API Support Is There?
Both currencylayer.com and openexchangerates.org serve user requests via a simple HTTPS request, where the response object is JSON. The JSON object can be easily parsed and read by any app. Both platforms require an API key or APP ID for authentication. In terms of ease of use, both platforms are equivalent. Here is an example call for currencylayer.com as shown on their website for retrieving the most recent exchange rate data:
&source = EUR
&currencies = USD
An example call for openexchangerates.org looks as follows for getting the latest exchange rates:
?app_id = APP_ID
&base = USD
Both platforms return JSON, which has a similar structure. The documentation of APIs on both platforms is also clear and easy to understand.
Our rating for both platforms in terms of ease of use and documentation is given below:
|API ease of use|
|Documentation of APIs|
What are the Types of Currencies Supported?
Along with world currency exchange rates, an exchange rate server is also expected to provide the rates for precious metals like gold and silver.
The table below summarizes the features of both currencylayer.com and openexchangerates.org in this respect. Both platforms provide world currency and precious metals exchange rates.
Our overall rating for this features is:
and precious metals
What Are the Available Subscription Plans for the Two Services
Both currencylayer.com and openexchangerates.org have different subscription plans for users. Different plans offer different features. Below is a summary table that compares the subscription plans between the two services:
In terms of pricing currencylayer.com is cheaper. Both services have special deals for an yearly subscription. It is shown with the special characters ‘*’ and ‘^’.
In summary, this is how we rate both services w.r.t. costs and pricing:
What Are The Desired Features of a Currency Exchange Server?
The table below shows a list of features that a currency exchange server is expected to have. We’ll refer to these features when comparing the two platforms.
|Server outputs the live currency exchange rates w.r.t base/source currency at regular time intervals. The time interval varies depending upon the API subscription package.|
|Change base/source currency. The default is normally US dollar (USD).|
|Returns the exchange rates for any specific date starting from the year 1999. The source currency can be varied depending upon the subscription plan.|
|When given a start and end date, the server returns the exchange rate w.r.t a base currency for different input currencies for that time period.|
|Convert a given amount from one currency to another|
|Statistics||Statistics such as exchange rate at the start and end of a given time period, average, percentage change etc.|
Let’s compare currencylayer.com and openexchangerates.org with respect to the above features.
How Do Features of CurrencyLayer and OpenExchangeRates Compare?
Let’s get down to business and compare the various features provided by the two platforms.
Comparison In Terms of Real Time Updates and API requests/month
One of the most important features of a currency exchange server is whether it can provide live real time updates or not. It is also important to know how many API requests can be made for a given time period for any subscription plan. The table below shows the update rate and API requests per month for the services.
While openexchangerates.com has hourly updates for free subscription plan, there is no 1-minute update option available on any plan. However, unlike currencylayer.com, openexchangerates.com has the unlimited API requests per month option on the unlimited plan, which may be the right option for big corporate customers.
For the live updates and API requests per month, we rate the two services as:
Comparison In Terms of Miscellaneous Features
The following table compares various features of the two platforms. The services provided vary, depending upon the subscription plan.
|Free x |
|Free ✓ |
|Free x |
|Only for VIP Platinum tier|
|Open, close, |
change within a
given time period
|Open, high low, close and |
Average exchange rates
for a given time period
Our overall rating in terms of miscellaneous features is:
Our Final Ratings
Here is a summary of how we rate the two services:
|API ease of use|
|Documentation of APIs|
|Currency support + |
More expensive plans for
each subscription type
No option for update every minute
No unlimited option
Some features only
available for the unlimited plan
Both currencylayer.com and openexchangerates.org are competing currency exchange services platform with their pros and cons. Both of them have similar features. If you are a big corporate customer with need for unlimited API calls then you can go for openexchangerates.org.
Overall for most users and businesses, currencylayer.com is a smarter option and a better choice with more features, affordable rates, support for 168+ currencies, easy to call APIs, and good documentation. Sign up for your free trial at currencylayer.com today and try out various currency exchange features all under one platform.
Disclaimer: The information was verified at the time of writing this blog. The subscription plans and features provided by each platform can vary or change with time.